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This weekend, Universal finally starts its planned cinematic universe of classic movie monsters: Dark Universe. The Mummy is the start to what the studio hopes can one day rival the MCU, but early tracking for the movie may have slapped some realism on that dream. The movie was only projected to open at a minimum $35 million, and the poor reviews could make the number drop before the end of the weekend. After Thursday night screenings, The Mummy is off to an okay start, but the rest of the weekend ain't looking too pretty.
According to Variety, The Mummy put away $2.7 million at the box office on Thursday night. It seems almost pointless to compare those Thursday numbers to Wonder Woman's opening, which stormed out of theaters Thursday with $11 million. The numbers for the Tom Cruise-led The Mummy have never been the highest. The film was previously estimated to open in the range of $35 million to $40 million for the whole weekend. Unfortunately for Universal, this estimate looks to be holding true.
As many have predicted, The Mummy is looking to take second place in its debut weekend. As further reported by Variety, Friday projections currently have the film around $35 million -- the minimum intake of its early projections. Any momentum that The Mummy might have had before entering theaters was squashed by poor reviews; the action-horror currently sits at a dismal 18% on Rotten Tomatoes (also known as the Blockbuster Killer). The Mummy now rests on the shoulders of Tom Cruise's international appeal, which is stronger than you may think. His Mission: Impossible -- Rogue Nation earned $682 million worldwide in 2015, so the star still has the draw. Of course, Rogue Nation also has the benefit of being a better reviewed film.
If there's any regret that Universal executives must have, it's that The Mummy opened a week after Wonder Woman. The film is a cultural phenomenon, as well as being a solid picture. The superhero movie is expected to once again win the weekend with $50 million, putting its cumulative total at around $200 million.
This is clearly not the news that Universal was hoping for, as The Mummy is the launching pad for Dark Universe. The poor reception certainly doesn't bolster confidence in the several planned films Universal has, including The Bride of Frankenstein, The Invisible Man, Van Helsing, and The Wolf Man. Obviously, The Mummy's lack of a splash doesn't mean these films will suffer a similar fate, but it adds a lot more pressure to Bill Condon's The Bride of Frankenstein, the next slated film in Dark Universe.
The international box office is likely to be The Mummy's saving grace, so keep on the lookout for more updates from Cinemablend.